Whatever your opinion about the new political order in Washington, it has brought economic issues to the surface. Large companies are encountering high-profile criticism for their offshore employment and production.

In recent years, large companies such as Ford and General Motors (among others) have decided to send jobs, especially in IT and production, to India or China to take advantage of the lower wages and taxes. Though it might seem to save the companies money, the backlash comes because it also takes these jobs from American workers.

It turns out that offshoring may not even be saving these companies money in the long run. When factoring in shipping costs, time and language barriers, and an occasional lack of quality control, the reduced cost due to lower wages may not in fact be reduced much at all. And the wages in India and China continue to rise.

Off-Shoring vs. On-Shoring

One solution companies are already turning to is onshoring. The Oxford English Dictionary defines onshoring as “The practice of transferring a business operation that was moved overseas back to the country from which it was originally relocated.” As a way to disprove the criticism they face, and as a way to improve their services, companies are starting to look at bringing their offshore work back to the U.S.

What does all of this have to do with RoboSource? Plenty. Our founder, Jason, has worked with many offshore IT teams over the years. About five years ago, he was overseeing a team of offshore developers, and also teaching a class in computer science at Taylor University. He made an interesting observation. The students he was teaching were writing great code. Better code than his offshore team, in fact. It was better quality up front, and less buggy in the long run.

He thought, why not “outsource” coding to U.S. college students instead of to teams overseas? Students can handle the programming, and onshoring eliminates the time and language barriers. RoboSource was born. It’s the perfect combination of all the benefits of onshoring, plus all the lower cost that has been the most compelling benefit of offshoring. RoboSource presents companies with the opportunity to have custom software built or bring skilled computer software engineers into their workforce on a contract basis. The companies receive the skilled labor and high-quality product they need at a price that is often competitive with an offshore model.

By focusing on “right-sizing,” or using the right level of person for the right job, and training younger workers, RoboSource and other companies are able to compete with offshore alternatives, offering a longer-lasting product and the satisfaction of supporting the domestic economy.

As the conversations in Washington continue, it is likely that the competitive advantage of onshoring companies will only continue to grow.